More Strong Than Time.

A poem by Victor Marie Hugo

("Puisque j'ai mis ma lèvre à ta coupe.")

[XXV., Jan. 1, 1835.]


Since I have set my lips to your full cup, my sweet,
Since I my pallid face between your hands have laid,
Since I have known your soul, and all the bloom of it,
And all the perfume rare, now buried in the shade;

Since it was given to me to hear one happy while,
The words wherein your heart spoke all its mysteries,
Since I have seen you weep, and since I have seen you smile,
Your lips upon my lips, and your gaze upon my eyes;

Since I have known upon my forehead glance and gleam,
A ray, a single ray, of your star, veiled always,
Since I have felt the fall upon my lifetime's stream,
Of one rose-petal plucked from the roses of your days;

I now am bold to say to the swift-changing hours,
Pass - pass upon your way, for I grow never old.
Flee to the dark abysm with all your fading flowers,
One rose that none may pluck, within my heart I hold.

Your flying wings may smite, but they can never spill
The cup fulfilled of love, from which my lips are wet.
My heart has far more fire than you have frost to chill,
My soul more love than you can make my love forget.

A. LANG.

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